Climax - English subtitled

Inspired by real-life events, the latest from controversial director Gaspar Noé (Enter the Void, Irréversible) depicts the malevolent madness that envelops a dance troupe’s post-rehearsal party after a punchbowl of sangria is spiked with LSD.

Time & Tickets

Gaspar Noé has accrued a reputation over the years for shocking violence and explicit sexuality that typically incites audiences to race for the exits in abject, pearl-clutching horror. However, the Cannes crowds and critics were enthusiastically rapt during the bow of his latest and most exhilarating provocation.
Set in 1996, the film follows an ensemble of dancers meeting in an isolated building to rehearse for three days. On the last night they throw a wild party – they unwind to the beat of techno and drink sangria to oblivion. As each dancer’s psyche begins to disintegrate, a creeping paranoia gives rise to deep-seated prejudices within the group that eventually explode into outright pandemonium against an infectious and hypnotic parade of period-appropriate needle-drops from the likes of Aphex Twin, Patrick Hernandez, Soft Cell and M/A/R/R/S.

Gaspar Noé, France, Belgium, USA, 2018, 95 min. French & English spoken, English subtitles. With Sofia Boutella, Romain Guillermic, Souheila Yacoub, Kiddy Smile, Claude-Emmanuelle Gajan-Maull.

In ‘The Divine Commedy’ medieval poet-philosopher Dante Alighieri brings the reader along on a journey through the afterlife. The book’s title gives away its happy ending: after hell comes purification, followed by Paradise. In other words: all’s well that ends well.

In CLIMAX, director Gaspar Noé turns Dante’s classical narrative structure around: after heaven (a delicious choreography) the protagonists end up in hell. Still, Noé states in this interview, CLIMAX is funnier, and therefore softer, than his previous movies. Of course, multiple scenes in this film are the stuff of nightmares, but the (at first) frolic and lickerish troupe of dancers lend the movie an airiness Noe’s body of work –overflowing with complex, often traumatized characters – lacked until now. Add to this an energizing soundtrackfull of chest hair disco records (Cerrone, Giorgio Moroder), tireless synthpop (Soft Cell) and avant-garde electronic music (Aphex Twin), and it becomes clear that Noé allows the viewer some space for joy and hypnosis. Vintage Noé, but with a refound energy: CLIMAX is an utterly enjoyable tragedy. So, we made you curious about Noé’s filmography? Check out this video essay! (Mind you, content may be considered shocking)